Friday, September 7, 2012

Bakso Nasi Impit

Star Q

There comes a time when you come to a mental block and you simply cannot think of anything to cook.  With picky eaters (like one of my kids), cooking is always a challenge to the point that you give up thinking about what to cook.  So, when all else fail, the missus and I would usually resort to something simple.  Sometimes simple works best!

Rummaging through the fridge and freezer, we found things that we could use to make Bakso.  I had eaten Bakso once before, during a party held by one of the Form Six classes in school.  The Bakso then was prepared by one of the girls of the class.  Her mother hails from Indonesia, and I suppose her Bakso was as authentic as anyone else's.  So, I persuaded her to share her recipe with me.  

Only today, I found the opportunity to make Bakso according to my student's recipe, albeit with a few twists of my own (as usual)  The end result (the 'twisted' one!) was really 'slurp-alicious'  and I found myself having three (but, small!) helpings!

For the soup :
  • 1/2 liter beef stock
  • 1 1/2 liter water
  • 1 stalk lemon grass, bruised
  • 3 shallots, sliced
  • 1 thumb-size ginger, bruised
  • 1 head garlic, bruised
  • 1 tbs white pepper

For the beef balls :
  • 400g ground beef (I used Ramly)
  • 1 tsp AP flour
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Place all ingredients for the soup in a large pot and let simmer gently.  Meanwhile, prepare the beef balls.  Mix all the ingredients and knead the mixture for about three minutes.  Take a small portion of the mixture and form small balls.  Put the balls straight into the simmering soup to cook till tender (if the soup is boiling rapidly, I notice that the beef balls disintegrate once place into the soup!  Check the soup for seasoning.

To serve, place a few rice cubes (nasi impit) in a bowl.  Place together some shredded cabbage, sliced spring onions and flat leaf parsley and shallot crisps.  Ladle the hot soup over the rice, along with some beef balls.  Accompany the Bakso with some hot soy sauce.

Hot soy sauce :
In a blender, blitz 1 cup thick soy sauce, 5 cloves garlic and 10 green birds eye chilies until fine.  This sauce keeps well in the fridge.  Add some water to dilute if you feel the sauce is too thick.  I like mine thick!

P.S. Don't overdo it with the lemon grass and ginger because the dominant flavors and aroma are the garlic and white pepper!

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